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Lisa Black jewellery

New York-based Lisa Black's jewellery takes fragments of the past and casts them in fascinating new lights.

1 November 2012

A native New Yorker, Lisa Black takes her inspiration from all over the world to craft jewellery that incorporates both the old and the new, with tribal qualities seamlessly interwoven with more modern sensibilities. Rough-hewn shapes mix with bold gold forms and colourful gems. "When I am creating, all my education, my love for iconic tribal elements and my passion for adornment infuse my work with life and presence," says Black. This sense of the rare, the ancient and the tribal combine to produce jewellery that is full of mystery and a very earthy spirit.

Each of Black's three collections displays a keen eye for the exotic and the ancient. The Lisa Black Luxury collection features the finest gold and pearl embellishments, creating a scintillating mix of colours and textures. The ancient chalcedony and South Sea Keshi necklace contrasts lavender and crisp white, while the Australian South Sea pearl and sapphire opera-length necklace features bright violet hues. Intricate gold work adds ornate texture to the Balinese bead and black Keshi earrings, and similarly on the Australian South Sea pearl and Indonesian pendant.

If the Luxury collection is all about the finest materials, the Tribal Black collection sees more down-to-earth elements come into play. Black's design is no less impressive, but here you see more elemental finishes, such as on the Aboriginal coffee bush seed and Keshi pearl collar. Black is known for taking unusual elements and creating the jewellery around them. Her conus shell disc earrings are testament to this. There is something almost ancient about them, as if they have been dug up from the earth, perfectly preserved, the hammered gold calling forth bygone times.

This old-world element echoes throughout Black's jewellery, and the Ancient Black collection takes this straight to heart. The pieces incorporate ancient relics into their core. Fluted melon beads of turquoise and gold; deep blue lapis lazuli; breathtaking polished jade - all have been discovered in archaeological excavations. With some dating back to more than 5,000 ago, Black has created jewellery that keeps the stories alive and brings these lost gems back to fiery life.


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